Older homes are full of character and are often more affordable than newer properties. Yet living in a home that might not have HVAC ducts to deliver heated or cooled air to all of the rooms can present challenges during both the summer and winter.
Rather than spending thousands of dollars and waiting through weeks of noisy construction to install ducts for A/C and heating, consider a ductless mini-split system instead. These heating systems work well for older homes in at least five valuable ways.
Running new ducts is one of the most time-consuming parts of adding central air conditioning and heating to a structure that has never had it. A professional can install the furnace or AC unit itself in a matter of hours, but installing even small flexible ducts requires the contractors to open up the walls and ceiling cavities.
This can take even an experienced team a day or more to run ducts from each room or zone back to the HVAC equipment. In a large older home with three or more bedrooms, that can add up to multiple weeks of work. Since ductless heating systems rely on very small and flexible plastic tubes instead, you can have a quick installation with no need to open up the walls or ceilings.
Fewer Interior Alterations
In many older homes with shallow wall cavities, you don't have enough room to fit ducts into the existing space. Contractors are often stuck building protrusions to cover the ducts, leaving a noticeable box or ridge running around the edge of the ceiling or down a corner.
If you love the current look and dimensions of each room, stick to the ductless equipment. The flexible plastic air lines can fit through thin wall cavities and other tight spaces for fewer alterations to each room. You can minimize the delivery units that blow the heated and cooled air into each area as well to blend in better.
Far Less Duct Maintenance
Even the most durable metal ducts have a chance of opening at a joint, becoming crushed, or filling up with moisture and dust. The air supply lines used for ductless heating are far more resistant to all of these problems that reduce the amount of comfort you receive while increasing your energy bills.
You have no need to check the air supply lines unless you have a problem. In contrast, you need to inspect traditional ducts at least once a year or preferably twice a year.
Many older homes feature unique layouts to make the best use of a limited amount of space because contractors built them during times when family sizes were larger. Unfortunately, you might find delivering an even amount of heating and cooling over multiple floors and into tight spaces like attic rooms and extensions tricky.
Manufacturers design ductless heating systems with unusual layouts in mind. Since each system consists of both an outdoor condensing unit and indoor air delivery blowers, you can get a steady flow of air into an area where ducts might not reach or fit.
Finer Zone Control
Finally, you can easily zone ductless heating systems with minimal extra equipment. Since the system already relies on multiple distinct units to both generate the heating and cooling and deliver the heating and cooling to each room, simply install a thermostat that can communicate with each blower separately.
Traditional ducts require many more alterations and extra equipment, such as automated dampers, in order to implement zoned heating and cooling control. You can skip these extra costs and the extra repairs they require later by choosing ductless heating instead.
Regardless of how you decide to upgrade your older home, Capitol Service Company Inc. is your partner for HVAC comfort. Discuss your options for heating and cooling with us today.